Spices, textiles, and medicine included in Cargo from Jakarta and Surat to England, October 1625.

In October 1625, the English ships Moon, Discovery, Ruby, Blessings, and William arrived in England after long voyages to and from the Indian Ocean. The ships stopped in Jakarta (a Dutch colony also called Batavia, now in the country of Indonesia) and Surat to (the major port of Mughal India) to purchase cargo to sell for a profit in England. The journey was lengthy, often lasting roughly three years. For the Moon, it took twenty-two months just to travel from Jakarta to England! Journeys lasting years were expensive and therefore the profits had to be high.

The expensive cargos included luxury items one would expect from the Indian Ocean world including spices like pepper and cinnamon, textiles like silk and cotton, dye like indigo, and medicines like bezoar stones and gumlack (shellac).

Note of cargo of the Moon Jacarta, Oct 1625
Cargos of the Moone, Discouverie, Rubie, Blessinges, and William, October 1625, The National Archives Kew, SP 84/129

 

Map showing Jakart and Surat
Jakarta and Surat

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